In the last edition of my blog, we had reached the point where we were waiting with mounting excitement to be called forward for our team’s turn.
Suddenly it was time to kit up and venture upwards. We were given red overalls. Mine seemed to have been made for someone twelve inches taller than myself, so I found I was wiping out my footprints as I walked. We had hard hats and goggles. Trying to fit the goggles over my glasses was a feat itself. They pressed so hard, I had indentations around my eyes for hours afterwards. But I was determined to see where I was going.
We left our supporters at the base of the third and final zip wire. They would know we were coming from the reverberations of the wires.
Onto the bus to be taken way up to the first of the three wires. It was freezing by now, but at least it had stopped raining. We were told that this was the longest but slowest of the three. We were strapped into our seats and connected to the wires. All four bears were tucked snugly away. Maude was with Steve, Cuddles with Jo, Murphy with me and Alf with Jess’s Auntie Sue. All the staff wanted to know what the bears signified.
There we were poised behind the metal gate which would spring back to release us into the void. The wait seemed interminable, but suddenly we heard ‘Three, two, one’ and we were off. My immediate thought was ‘whoaaaaaaaa’, and I think I probably screamed it too.
The wind was trying to turn me round, so I manipulated the straps as we had been told and soon I could see where I was going. I could see the others. Steve and Sue were already well ahead, with Jo and I bringing up the rear. It really did not seem to be that fast. But thirty seconds later we hit the block at the end of the run and were hauled in to clear the wires.
All the others followed us down. The bears welcoming everyone as they arrived.
We were all shouting to one another. ‘That was great’. ‘I want to do it again’. ‘What a great view’. Not one of us wanted to stop there without doing the next two wires. From here we had to walk to the next zip wire station. I brought up the rear, wiping out everyone’s footprints with my overalls.
Wire number two was steeper and faster and was over the quarry. Because you were so far from the ground it seemed much faster. Just before we were strapped in, the sun came out. The wet grey slate beneath now shone up at us.
Finally, we were at number three wire. We were told this was the fastest. We could see our supporters at the bottom. They knew we were next down. And away we went, the fearless Muskebears and their transporters.
This time we all had the confidence to let go of the straps and to wave as we went over the spectators. Going faster, we hit the block with such force that I felt I was going to somersault over the wire. We were all laughing like fools and wanting to go back up and do it again.
Jess and Ruby had been waiting for us and were both nearly frozen. We all had so much adrenaline, we were not feeling the cold. We handed back out kit and went for a hearty bowl of soup in the café. While we were all thawing out, I went around with my recorder asking what people had thought of the experience. With no exceptions, everyone had thoroughly enjoyed themselves and were thrilled they were raising money for good causes.
These were some of the comments:
Meg and Tom thought it has been really cool and wanted to do it again.
The views were breath-taking.
The second wire was the most exhilarating.
We need coffee to warm up now
Fantastic. I want to do Velocity now.
It was amazing. I wanted to do it again straight away.
On the journey home, Steve and I discussed what we could do next. We both want to do the Velocity Zip Wire, which is faster and longer than Titan. We will even consider a tandem parachute jump, but only if they partner us with someone professional. Be warned, we may be after you for sponsorship money again next year.